Gerald R. Ford and the Politics of Post-Watergate America - Vol. 2

Gerald R. Ford and the Politics of Post-Watergate America - Vol. 2

Gerald R. Ford and the Politics of Post-Watergate America - Vol. 2

Gerald R. Ford and the Politics of Post-Watergate America - Vol. 2


This two-volume collection draws together essays commissioned for the Hofstra University Presidential Conference on Gerald R. Ford. The essays and transcripts of panel discussions, prepared by academic political scientists and historians, as well as members of the Ford administration, are divided into sections devoted to such issues as the pardon of Richard Nixon, the Rockefeller vice-presidency, Middle East diplomacy, economic policy, and Ford's relations with the press. In a period when the Ford presidency is undergoing reevaluation, these essays will be of particular value.


It is a rare opportunity to bring together those who review history and those who make it. This book is the result of just such a meeting; it is the product of a conference on the presidency of Gerald R. Ford that took place at Hofstra University in the spring of 1989. What emerges is a portrait of both an individual and an era that have long been obscured in American history.

It has been a frequent mistake to overlook the Ford presidency as a relatively insignificant period in American history, an interlude between the Nixon scandal and the difficult Carter years. Now, fifteen years later, the brief and relatively quiet period of the Ford tenure is beginning to be viewed as an important time in the development of American politics and society.

By way of an introduction, two Ford administration chiefs of staff, Richard Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, offer personal observations on the Ford presidency. The book is then divided topically into sections, each introduced by a chapter written by a contemporary scholar. Commentary by Ford-era political figures is included in the form of transcripts. The volume closes with a personal reflection by President Ford.

Ford emerged in unchartered political waters. Fresh from the House of Representatives, he was the first appointed vice president in the nation's history. Upon his elevation to the presidency, Ford faced a Congress dominated by a Democratic party determined to challenge the scope of executive powers and a public grown cynical by the events of Watergate and Vietnam. Two of the primary goals of the president were regaining public trust in the office and reestablishing "political stability" in the nation. The successful achievement of these goals tended, however, to obscure other, more mundane, but no less pressing issues involving the economy and foreign policy, energy conservation and environmental pollution.

The pardoning of President Richard M. Nixon, the first and most controversial decision of the Ford administration, overshadowed everything that came after.

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed


An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.